These vegan chili cheese fries are oil-free and topped with healthy bean chili and easy queso cheese sauce. They’re highly addictive, totally delicious and always a hit!

Recipe Features

  • vegan and gluten-free – great for those with dietary restrictions
  • versatile – use the cheese sauce for a dip and sauce for chips, steamed veggies and more
  • kid-friendly – kids love this fun, messy meal!

Ingredients Notes

Various ingredients in jars and containers on a counter top.

Here are a few notes about the ingredients needed:

  • nutritional yeast – creates the cheesy flavour of the sauce, I can’t recommend a substitute for this recipe
  • tomato sauce – straight up, plain tomato or pasta sauce from a jar or can
  • cashews – create the creamy base of the sauce, look for “raw” cashews with no added oil or salt
  • beans – try kidney, pinto or black beans, or a variety, a 14 oz or 19 can works (1.5-2 cups)

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1. Bake the Fries

Here are some tips for the best oil-free baked fries:

  • Go with a fairly high temp – I suggest 425 F.
  • Don’t cut them too thin. About a 1/2 inch cut is perfect for a puffy and crispy on the outside, tender on the inside fry.
  • Use salt, pepper, and any spices you want.
  • Lay them in a single layer and don’t overcrowd the pan. This is key to crispiness!
  • Bake for 25 minutes. Flip, bake for 20 minutes. Done!
Baked fries on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.

Step 2. Make the Chili

The chili for this recipe is super simple – add everything to a pan and simmer for 10-15 minutes to heat through and thicken. That’s it!

Tomato sauce, green pepper, onion, carrot and beans in a skillet.
Cooked chili in a skillet on a gas range stove top.

Step 3. Make the Queso

The queso can be made by blending everything in a high-speed blender.

NOTE: If you don’t have a high-speed blender, soak the cashews 8 hours up to overnight before using in the recipe. You can skip this if you want but the queso will grainy rather than smooth and creamy.

Cashews, nutritional yeast, lemon and tomato sauce in containers on a counter.
Cheese sauce in a small glass bowl.

Once you’ve made the fries, chili and queso, layer everything on a plate and dig in!

A plate of baked fries topped with chili and cheese sauce.

Tips, Substitutes and FAQs

How long does the cheese sauce keep for?

The cheese sauce keeps in the fridge for up to 5 days. It will thicken up a bit and can be thinned with a bit of water if needed. The chili can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days as well.

Do I have to soak the cashews?

If you have a high-speed blender, such as a Vitamix or Blentec, you do not need to soak the cashews. If you don’t have a high-speed blender, I suggest soaking the cashews for 8 hours up to overnight or boiling them for 10 minutes then draining before using in the recipe.

A small plate of baked fries topped with chili and cheese sauce.

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A plate of baked fries topped with chili and cheese sauce.

Vegan Chili Cheese Fries

  • Author: Deryn Macey
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Entree
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

These addictive chili cheese fries are like a dream come true. They’re made with healthy, wholesome ingredients but taste like a serious indulgence. They’re a cinch to make too. Get the fries baking, blend up the queso, mix up the chili, load it all up on a plate or just pile the chili and queso right onto the baking tray and DIG IN.


Scale

Ingredients

For the Queso Cheese Sauce

For the Chili

  • 1 19 oz. can mixed beans
  • 1 1/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 a jalapeno, seeds removed and minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 1 large grated carrot, grated (approx. 1/2 heaping cup),
  • 1 tsp each sea salt and black pepper

For the Fries

  • potato of choice such as golden or russet (approx. 1 medium or 1/2 a large potato per person)
  • sea salt and pepper
  • optional: paprika and chili powder

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Slice the potatoes into approximately 1/2 inch wedge fries and toss with a sprinkle of sea salt and pepper. Add a pinch of paprika and chili powder, if desired. Line the fries on a baking tray (use parchment paper, a silicone mat or non-stick cooking spray), allowing some room between each fry. Bake for 25 minutes, flip and bake 15-20 minutes more until browned and crispy.
  2. Add all queso ingredients to a high-speed blender and mix until smooth and creamy.
  3. To make the chili add all the ingredients to a medium-sized pot and little simmer over medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring every so often until it’s well-mixed and the carrot is tender.
  4. Once the fries are ready, load them onto a plate. Top with chili and cheese sauce and dig in!

Notes

Queso sauce and chili make enough for 4-6 servings. Adjust amount of potatoes accordingly.

If you don’t have a high-speed blender, soak cashews in water for 8 hours up to overnight or boil for 10 minutes then drain. You can skip this if you want but the sauce will be grainy.

If you can’t find mixed beans, kidney, black or pinto beans all work. If you can’t find a 19 oz can, a 14 oz can is fine. You’ll need 1.5-2 cups of beans.

This recipe is best enjoyed fresh but the cheese sauce and chili can both be stored separately in the fridge for up to 5 days.

For the tomato sauce, use any plain canned or jarred tomato or pasta sauce.

Keywords: vegan chili cheese fries, vegan queso sauce

UPDATE NOTE: This recipe was originally published on June 18, 2018. It was updated with new photos and text on June 4, 2020.